Resilience Hope Rainbow
May 14, 2020

For over 40 years, the cleantech industry has been promoting resilience as a benefit of energy storage systems (batteries). Over the last three years in California, resilience has gone mainstream because our fire season became so destructive that electrical utilities had to shut down the grid to prevent fire starts. In the face of grid shutdowns, energy storage systems provided resilience for schools, homes, and businesses, which was a comforting response to the threat of being cut off from the grid and all that it powers.

The COVID-19 pandemic has revealed another kind of resilience – the resilience of people. This is a key skill we see in action all around us. The American Psychological Association (APA) defines resilience as the means of “adapting well in the face of adversity, trauma, tragedy, threats or significant sources of stress”. Sun Light & Power has been focused on the physical safety of our employees by defining and implementing rigorous safety policies to keep our team members and customers safe. In the coming months, we need to dig into social and emotional safety as part of a strategy to build resilience in our team members. The APA outlines four core components of resilience: connection, wellness, healthy thinking, and meaning.  Let’s jump into the first one.

COVID-19 has cut off something more powerful than the electricity grid, it has cut off human contact through the “social distancing” measures necessary to stop the spread of the virus.  Social distancing is a misnomer. In reality, we are physical distancing, but we crave social contact and need social connections. We know that shelter-in-place health orders strain our social connections. We can feel it. Our employee-owned company is taking steps to nurture social connections by hosting daily check-ins, video cooking classes, and virtual happy hours. Will this be enough? We don’t know, but we will learn from these experiments and adjust as we go.

Human Touch Need

Over the coming weeks, we will explore each of these components (connection, wellness, healthy thinking, and meaning) as we strive to build resilience in our teams. We encourage you to consider how to build resilience in people in your organization.  We look forward to sharing what we learn as we work through the challenge of building the other resilience - the resilience of people.

Troy Tyler is COO at Sun Light & Power.

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